Fairfax City car wash proposal advances with architectural review board approval

The proposed Tommy’s Express Car Wash at Fairfax Blvd and Lion Run in Fairfax City passed its first hurdle last week and will advance to the planning commission next.

The Fairfax City Board of Architectural Review has unanimously recommended that the city council approve a proposal for a 4,553-square-foot car wash at 9917 Fairfax Blvd. The site was formerly home to The Espositos, a 40-plus-year-old Italian restaurant that closed permanently last month.

Behind the project is D.C.-based private equity firm Olympus Pines, which submitted an application for a special-use permit to repurpose the 1.15-acre site earlier this year.

According to a city council staff report, the car wash is designed to process up to 200 vehicles per hour, anticipates serving a “peak volume” of 50-75 cars per hour with a maximum staff of four to five. The site, which currently features a one-way entrance and exit on Fairfax Blvd, would also include three “stacking lanes” to prevent backups.

During a January work session, city council members expressed concerns that the high volume of traffic at the site might lead to congestion. However, at their April 17 meeting, the developer’s attorneys informed the architectural review board that no changes have been made to the design.

The city planning commission must review the application before it makes its way to the city council.